The 15 Best Feminist Documentaries (Ranked in 2024)

I scoured the Web to find the best documentaries on feminism from every angle.

I’ve got many angles covered: TV, movies, politics (young and old), the Supreme Court and even horror!

The oldest documentary is from 2011 and the most recent is 2024).

And most are easy to stream (4 are on Netflix, 2 are on HBO Max and you can watch 8 of them for free on Kanopy!).


1) She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry

The best feminist documentary is Mary Dore’s 2014 film “She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry.”

This 92-minute doc takes us on a wild ride through the women’s movement of the 1960s and 70s.

It’s a no-holds-barred look at the women who fought for their rights and changed the course of history.

We’re talking about the heavy hitters like Betty Friedan, author of “The Feminine Mystique,” and Gloria Steinem, founder of Ms. Magazine.

And Dore also shines a light on lesser-known activists like Fran Beal. She fought for the rights of black women.

And then there’s Rita Mae Brown, who pushed for lesbian visibility.

The film takes us from the streets of New York City. That’s where women protested the Miss America pageant in 1968.

Then we visit the halls of Congress, where they lobbied for the Equal Rights Amendment.

We see the rise of women’s health clinics, the fight for abortion rights, and the birth of the National Organization for Women (NOW).

But it’s not all serious business.

Dore captures the joy and humor of the movement.

Lke the time activists threw their bras into a “Freedom Trash Can” at the Miss America protest.

Or when they infiltrated the offices of Ladies’ Home Journal and demanded that the magazine hire a female editor.

“She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry” is a rallying cry for a new generation of feminists.

Watch “She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry” for free on Kanopy at and Hoopla at

Check here for the latest streaming options:

2) This Changes Everything

Release date: December 7, 2018

I believe that Tom Donahue’s documentary “This Changes Everything” is the second best feminist documentary.

It exposes the rampant sexism in Hollywood.

The doc features interviews with A-list actresses like Meryl Streep, Sandra Oh, and Taraji P. Henson.

They share their personal experiences of discrimination and harassment in the industry. Streep recalls being told she was “too ugly” for a role. Oh talks about being typecast as a “dragon lady.”

Donahue also highlights the groundbreaking research of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media. The institute found that male characters outnumber female characters 3 to 1 in family films. And when female characters do appear, they’re often stereotyped or sexualized.

The 97-minut doc also delves into the lack of women behind the camera. In 2017, women made up only 18% of directors, writers, and producers in Hollywood.

That’s a problem, because as Tina Fey puts it in the film, “If you don’t have women writing and directing, you don’t have women’s stories being told.”

But “This Changes Everything” isn’t just a downer. It’s a call to action. The film highlights the work of advocacy groups like Time’s Up and the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project. It also showcases the success stories of women who have broken through the glass ceiling, like Ava DuVernay and Patty Jenkins.

In the end, “This Changes Everything” reminds you that sexism is still alive and well in Hollywood. But it’s also a hopeful vision of a future where women’s voices are heard and valued.

Watch “This Changes Everything” for free on Kanopy at or Hoopla at

You can rent it for $ on Amazon and Apple TV too. Check for the latest streaming options.

3) 9to5: The Story of a Movement

Release date: February 1, 2020

“9to5: The Story of a Movement” is the best feminist documentary on Netflix.

It’s a powerful doc that shines a light on the women’s movement of the 1970s. Directed by Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar, this 89-minute doc is a must-watch.

The PBS doc centers on the women who fought for fair treatment in the workplace. It covers the secretaries who organized the first 9to5 meeting in Boston to the leaders who took the movement nationwide.

We meet women like Ellen Cassedy and Karen Nussbaum. They risked their jobs to stand up for their rights.

Through archival footage and interviews, the doc paints a vivid picture of the sexism and harassment women faced on the job. We see women being groped by their bosses, denied promotions, and paid less than their male colleagues.

But we also see the power of collective action. The women of 9to5 organized protests, filed lawsuits, and lobbied for change.

They won victories like the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 and the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993. “9to5: The Story of a Movement” is a reminder that change is possible when people come together and fight for what’s right.

It’s a tribute to the brave women who paved the way for the #MeToo movement and the ongoing fight for gender equality in the workplace.

Watch it on Netflix at

4) Marina Abramović: The Artist Is Present

Get ready to stare into the soul of one of the most controversial artists of our time in “Marina Abramović: The Artist Is Present.”

This 106-minute doc, directed by Matthew Akers in 2012, takes us inside Abramović’s groundbreaking exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

While art is at the core, it’s also the best doc related to feminism I’ve found on HBO Max (see below bullets for the “feminist themes”).

For three months in 2010, Abramović sat silently in a chair as museum-goers lined up to sit across from her and gaze into her eyes.

Some cried, some laughed, and some just sat in silence. But all were captivated by the raw emotion of the performance.

Akers takes us behind the scenes of the exhibition.

She shows us the grueling physical and mental preparation Abramović underwent.

We see her fasting, meditating, and pushing her body to the limits. We also get a glimpse into her tumultuous personal life, including her breakup with longtime collaborator Ulay.

The feminist themes in the documentary include:

  • Vulnerability and Strength: Abramović’s work showcases the emotional resilience and the power of silent communication in a male-dominated world.
  • Body as a Medium: By using her body as the primary medium in her art, Abramović addresses issues of autonomy, objectification, and liberation. This challenges traditional views on the female body in art, typically portrayed by male artists and often for male consumption.
  • Breaking Taboos: Her performances often break societal taboos and confront uncomfortable truths about female existence and sexuality. This pushes the boundaries of what is publicly acceptable to discuss or display, which is a critical aspect of feminist art.
  • Endurance Art: The endurance aspect of her work can be seen as a metaphor for the struggles women face, emphasizing persistence in the face of physical and emotional challenges.

Watch it for free on

The main streamer is HBO Max at

See all the streaming options at

5) The Disappearance of Shere Hite

Release Date: February 2, 2023

This was the best feminist documentary I watched in 2024.

Shere Hite, remember her?

The fearless feminist researcher who shook up the 1970s with her groundbreaking work on female sexuality?

Yeah, that Shere Hite. Well, turns out, she’s been missing.

Not like “missing person” missing, but more like “disappeared from the public eye” missing.

Enter filmmaker Nicole Newnham, who decided to track down the elusive Hite and unravel the mystery of her disappearance.

The result?

“The Disappearance of Shere Hite,” a fascinating documentary that’s part biography, part detective story, and all about the price of speaking truth to power.

Newnham takes us on a wild ride through Hite’s life, from her early days as a model to her rise as a feminist icon with the publication of “The Hite Report.”

We see how Hite’s work challenged societal norms and sparked a national conversation about women’s pleasure, but also how it made her a target of criticism and ridicule.

But here’s the thing: Hite didn’t back down. She kept pushing boundaries and asking tough questions, even as the backlash grew.

And then, poof! She vanished, leaving behind a legacy that’s still felt today.

Newnham’s film is a tribute to Hite’s courage and a reminder of the importance of standing up for what you believe in, even when the world wants to silence you.

It’s a story that feels all too relevant in our current moment, when women’s rights are once again under attack.

So, if you’re looking for a documentary that’s equal parts entertaining and inspiring, give “The Disappearance of Shere Hite” a watch.

Just don’t be surprised if it leaves you feeling a little rebellious yourself.

Watch “The Disappearance of Shere Hite” on AMC+ (with subscription) or rent it at Amazon, Apple TV and the bunch ($4.99 last I checked). Here are the latest streaming options:

6) Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story

Release Date: November 24, 2017

“Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story. Ever heard of her? Hollywood’s glamour queen turned secret tech genius.

This isn’t fiction.

Directed, written, and co-edited by Alexandra Dean, this doc is a goldmine of untold stories.

The 90-minute doc hit the PBS American Masters series in May 2018.

Hedy’s tale? It’s epic.

From a young Austrian in the clutches of Nazi fear to Hollywood’s elite circle. Six marriages. Count ’em.

The glitz, the glam, and oh, just inventing the tech that’s now your smartphone’s lifeline. But there’s more.

Her clashes with heavyweights like MGM’s Louis B. Mayer, her dark dealings with ‘Dr. Feelgood’ Max Jacobson, and her interactions with icons like Cecil B. DeMille.

And then, the twist. Hedy becomes a recluse.

Fame’s fleeting, folks. But hold up—this doc isn’t just another tragic Hollywood story.

It’s a feminist manifesto. ‘Bombshell’ peels back the layers on the societal boxes around beauty and brains.

Hedy wasn’t just facing cameras; she battled a male-dominated tech field, pushing the envelope on women’s roles both in and out of the lab.

This doc does more than recount history. It challenges it, questioning the recognition and equality of women in tech and film.

It’s a celebration of a woman who was way ahead of her time. So, catch ‘Bombshell.’ Get inspired. Hedy Lamarr wasn’t just a star. She was a revolutionary.”

Watch it on Netflix at; or for free on Kanopy at

Check here for all the latest streaming options:

7) Being Mary Tyler Moore

Release date: March 13, 2023.

HBO hits it out of the park with “Being Mary Tyler Moore.”

This 1 hour 59 minute doc dives deep. It’s directed by James Adolphus, showcasing a titan of TV. Moore wasn’t just an actress; she changed the game.

James Adolphus pulls from Moore’s vast archive.

We see all of her 60 years in showbiz. The doc is tight, teeming with personal tales and monumental moments.

What’s the feminist angle?

Mary clashed with big names, from Louis B. Mayer to Rob Reiner. Every detail is a revelation.

She was the first woman to wear pants on TV.

Big deal back then.

The network rejected the pants at first. But Mary won.

No “ass shots” was her rule. That’s Moore – fierce, ahead of her time.

And she was showing to the national TV audience that being a career woman was ok.

She inspired women to dream, lead, and change narratives.

Her legacy? It’s massive. You walk away empowered, informed.

Watch this doc. It’s a masterclass in influence and resilience. Mary Tyler Moore wasn’t just a star; she was a movement.

I watched “Being Mary Tyler Moore” on HBO Max (as of April 1, 2024) here at

8) The Red Pill

I include the controversial”The Red Pill” (named after the scene in “The Matrix”) in this list of feminist docs because it takes a counter point to many in the feminist movement.

The 117 minute doc is directed by Cassie Jaye (a self-proclaimed feminist) in 2016.

She explores the Men’s Rights Movement, a controversial and often polarizing group.

Jaye sets out to investigate the movement and its leaders, like Paul Elam, founder of A Voice for Men, and Warren Farrell, author of “The Myth of Male Power.”

Along the way, she interviews men’s rights activists, attends conferences like the International Conference on Men’s Issues in Detroit.

She examines controversial topics like false rape accusations, the gender pay gap, and custody battles.

The film sparked heated debates before it was even released. In Australia, a petition to ban the film gained over 2,370 signatures.

Feminist protesters in Canada blocked the entrance to a screening at the University of Calgary.

Critics accused Jaye of giving a platform to misogynists and legitimizing their views.

But supporters praised Jaye for tackling tough issues and showcasing men’s struggles.

They argue that the film exposes real problems like male suicide rates (3.5 times higher than women in the U.S.), workplace deaths (93% are men), and custody battles (women gain custody in 82% of cases).

Throughout the film, Jaye grapples with her own beliefs.

She questions her assumptions about the patriarchy and considers alternative perspectives on gender issues.

By the end, she no longer calls herself a feminist.

Love it or hate it, “The Red Pill” sparked important conversations. It challenged viewers to confront their biases and consider the complexity of gender issues in the 21st century. But watch out – this red pill might be hard to swallow.

Watch it for free on Kanopy at It’s also on Fubo (with subscription) and for free on the following (with ads) Roku, Vudu Tubi, Pluto and Plex. You can rent it on Amazon, Apple TV et al.

Check here for all the latest streaming options:

9) Reversing Roe

Release date: September 13, 2018

The Netflix Original “Reversing Roe” is a powerful 99-minute documentary directed by Ricki Stern and Anne Sundberg.

My hat is off to Netflix for wading into the controversial issue of abortion rights in America.

The documentary traces the history of abortion law from the landmark Roe v. Wade decision in 1973 to the present day.

It explores how the issue has become increasingly politicized and polarizing over the years.

Through interviews with activists, politicians, and legal experts on both sides of the debate, the doc presents a nuanced and complex picture.

We hear from pro-choice advocates like Gloria Steinem and Donna Howard.

But we also hear from pro-life supporters like Troy Newman and John Seago.

The doc also features powerful firsthand accounts from women who have had abortions. Their stories put a human face on an often abstract and divisive issue.

But perhaps the most eye-opening aspect of “Reversing Roe” is the political strategy behind the anti-abortion movement.

The doc shows how conservatives have worked tirelessly to chip away at abortion rights through state-level legislation and judicial appointments.

It’s a chilling reminder of the high stakes in the ongoing battle over reproductive rights.

Watch Reversing Roe on Netflix at

10) Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: A History of Folk Horror

Release date: March 19, 2021

“Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: A History of Folk Horror” is a massive 194-minute documentary directed by Kier-La Janisse in 2021.

You’ll dive deep into the folk horror subgenre and explore its origins, themes, and cultural significance through a fascinating feminist lens.

The doc covers a wide range of folk horror media. There’s the classic British films like “The Wicker Man” (1973) and “Blood on Satan’s Claw” (1971) to contemporary works like “The Witch” (2015) and “Midsommar” (2019).

It also showcases international contributions from Japan, Brazil, and beyond.

You might be wondering what this has to do with feminism?

The director is an expert on the exploitation of women. She wrote “House of Psychotic Women: An Autobiographical Topography of Female Neurosis in Horror and Exploitation Films” (FAB Press, 2012).

The documentary interviews filmmakers, scholars, and critics on the oppression and exploitation of women in horror films.

Many films feature female protagonists victimized by patriarchal societies.

Or women fighting against male-dominated cults and religions.

The doc highlights the work of pioneering female directors like Anna Biller, whose film “The Love Witch” (2016) subverts traditional gender roles and expectations.

Biller discusses using folk horror tropes to explore feminist themes.

And she criques how society controls and commodifies female sexuality.

I recommend this doc for horror fans and anyone interested in the intersection of gender, power, and mythology in popular culture.

Watch it Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched for free on Kanopy at

Or check here for the latest streaming options:

11) Nothing Compares

Release date: September 30, 2022.

“Nothing Compares” is a fiery 97-minute biography on the Irish singer Sinéad O’Connor.

Director Kathryn Ferguson shows how the controversial singer didn’t just hit the charts—she smashed norms.

Sinéad never played by the rules.

Ripping up the Pope’s photo on live TV? Classic Sinéad.

Ferguson’s doc paints her as a rebel with a cause, battling patriarchs from the stage to the streets.

She didn’t just sing; she roared against injustices, making waves in music and beyond.

Her battles were tough, the backlash brutal. Media and moguls alike didn’t know what to make of her.

Sinéad wasn’t here to play nice or stay quiet. This doc shows it all—the highs, the lows, and everything that stirred the pot.

O’Connor also advocated for the repeal of Ireland’s Abortion Ban. She was a key activist for the successful campaign to repeal the country’s strict abortion laws in 2018

And she inspired legions, from Russian feminist punk group Pussy Riot to X González.

She wasn’t just part of the conversation; she started it.

Nothing about this documentary is forgettable. It’s packed with rare footage, heart-pounding music, and interviews that hit you hard. Ferguson doesn’t just tell a story; she drops you right into the thick of Sinéad’s fiery journey.

Watch Nothing Compares on Paramount+ at

You can also stream “Nothing Compares” on Fubo (with subscription) and you can get it via Apple TV/Paramount+ option. Check the latest streaming options here:

12) Miss Representation

Release date: January 22, 2011

“Miss Representation” is a hard-hitting 85-minute documentary directed by Jennifer Siebel Newsom. It exposes how mainstream media undermines women in power.

The doc is a feminist rallying cry. It features interviews with influential women like Condoleezza Rice, Nancy Pelosi, Katie Couric, Rachel Maddow, Margaret Cho, and Geena Davis.

Newsom packs the film with shocking stats. Women hold only 3% of clout positions in mainstream media. Teen girls spend over 10 hours a day consuming media.

The doc shows how this constant barrage of sexist media messaging harms young girls. It leads to eating disorders, low self-esteem, and lack of ambition.

But “Miss Representation” isn’t just a feminist critique. It offers hope and inspiration for change.

It highlights organizations like the Girl Scouts and Women’s Media Center. They empower girls and promote positive representations of women in media.

The doc is a must-watch for anyone who cares about gender equality and media’s impact on society. It’s a powerful feminist film that will leave you outraged and inspired to make a difference.

Watch “Miss Representation” for free on Kanopy at

Check here for the doc’s latest streaming options:

13) Knock Down the House

Release date: May 1, 2019

“Knock Down the House” is an inspiring 86-minute documentary directed by Rachel Lears. It follows four progressive women who ran for Congress in 2018.

The Netflix original doc is a feminist triumph. It shows the power of ordinary women to challenge the political establishment.

The star of the film is Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC). We see her go from bartender to political powerhouse.

But the doc also features three other remarkable women: Amy Vilela, Cori Bush, and Paula Jean Swearengin. Each faces their own challenges, from personal tragedy to systemic racism.

Lears captures the blood, sweat, and tears of grassroots campaigning. We see the women knocking on doors, making phone calls, and giving fiery speeches.

The film is a testament to the rise of progressive women in politics. It shows how they are redefining what leadership looks like.

“Knock Down the House” is a must-watch for anyone who believes in the power of ordinary people to make change. It’s a rousing feminist documentary that will leave you cheering.

Watch “Knock Down the House” on Netflix at

14) RBG

Release date: May 4, 2018

“RBG” is a captivating 98-minute documentary directed by Betsy West and Julie Cohen. It’s a tribute to the life and legacy of Ruth Bader Ginsburg (RBG).

The doc is a feminist masterpiece. It shows how RBG became a trailblazing lawyer and Supreme Court Justice.

We see RBG’s early days as one of only nine women in her Harvard Law class. She faced blatant sexism but refused to be deterred.

The film highlights RBG’s groundbreaking legal work. She argued cases that established new protections against sex discrimination.

But “RBG” isn’t just a dry legal history. It’s also an intimate portrait of a feminist icon.

We see RBG’s loving marriage to her husband Marty. We hear from her children and granddaughter about her role as a mother and grandmother.

The doc also showcases RBG’s unexpected pop culture status. She became a meme, a Halloween costume, and even an action figure.

“RBG” is a must-watch for anyone who cares about women’s rights and the power of perseverance. It’s a moving tribute to a feminist trailblazer who changed the world.

Watch RBG for free on Kanopy at You can also watch it for free (with ads) on Vudu, Tubi, Redbox, Crackle, PlutoTV, Plex and Freevee.

It’s also available to subscribers of Julu and Fubo. And you can rent it on the big streamers like Amazon, Apple TV, YouTube et al.

Check here for the latest streaming options:

15) Girls State

Release Date: April 5, 2024

The best documentary on feminism I’ve found in 2024 is “Girls State”.

It’s a riveting doc that throws you right into the thick of young feminist warriors in training.

This isn’t just any political boot camp; it’s where Missouri’s teen girls tackle the big issues head-on.

Imagine a circle of teenagers, deeply engrossed in a Supreme Court simulation.

They’re not just role-playing—they’re embodying the fiery debates that shape our nation. The emotional resonance is palpable as these young women hold hands, a united front delving into America’s divisive issues.

This isn’t child’s play; it’s a powerful display of unity and intellectual force.

But “Girls State” doesn’t just parade the highs; it digs into the struggles. Watch these young women grapple with a system rigged against them.

They confront the very counselors who impose antiquated rules about dress codes and buddy systems.

The film shines a harsh light on double standards when compared to their male counterparts’ experiences.

The boys dive into policy debates while the girls are initially bogged down with songs and superficial rules.

And then, the Dobbs decision on abortion leaks.

The timing? Impeccable.

These girls, cast as justices, tackle the issue with a maturity and earnestness that belies their age.

Girls State is still in the cinema as I write this (May 4, 2024). See showtimes here:

It’s also streaming on Apple TV at

Thanks for reading!

Rob Kelly

Chief Maniac, Daily Doc